Buckle up, we’re taking you on a ride to Richmond, BC for our weekend getaway series. Richmond is a culturally diverse and geographically unique community centrally located on Canada’s West Coast, in Metro Vancouver. From Seattle, it’s about a 2.5 hour drive, cross your fingers for a traffic-less drive.
Our theme for this Weekend Getaway Series is “Taste of Asia.” We’ve put together an easy to follow weekend guide to maximize your stay in Richmond packed with activities and the best eats around.
We recommend you leaving Seattle as soon as you can to avoid heavy traffic. Keeping the average work hours in mind, we’ve scheduled an after-work departure time of 5:30PM. With an average driving time of 2.50 hours, you’ll be able to fit in a nice dinner once you get up there.
Our first stop on our food adventure is a restaurant called Haroo Korean Homestyle Cuisine, they are known for their authentic homestyle recipes. The restaurant is tucked away upstairs in the Golden Village neighborhood among other popular restaurants like Dinesty Chinese, Top Shanghai Cuisines, and Suhang Restaurant which you may have heard of.
What makes Korean dining so wonderful is the banchan (or small dishes) that comes with your meal prior to your main dishes. These can range from stir-fried mushrooms, doljaban muchim (seasoned seaweed), oi sobagi (stuffed cucumber kimchi), myulchi bokkeum (dried achovies), kimchi, kongnamul muchim (beat sprouts) and many other dishes. You’ll generally find a larger selection of these plates the more authenic the restaurant gets.
One of our favorites were the salad with a fruit puree dressing that was sweet and tangy. What’s great about eating at Korean restaurants are all the complimentary small plates you get with your meal.
The picture above is the kimchi fried rice with a sunny side egg on top. This is a classic Korean dish that is super flavorful. It’s generally made with Napa cabbage (kimchi), a sweet onion, garlic, soy sauce, butter, sliced beef, spam, pork and salt to taste. We highly recommend getting this dish when you make your visit, it’s not to spicy if you’re worried about needing a glass of milk after every bite. We pretty much licked the plate clean.
This is one of our favorite spicy soups called soonduboo or spicy tofu soup, a spicy profile of about 4/5. You get a myriad of vegetables and protein like anchovies, shiitake mushrooms, kelp, onions, garlic, tofu and green onions. The best way to eat this is to take a scoop of the soup with your spoon and muddle it in your rice bowl or taste it to get the right amount of soup to rice.
This is the most recognizable Korean dish (LA Galbi) most people can identify and boy was is tasty. The meat was tender, sweet, garlicky and full of flavor. What makes “LA Galbi” LA? Well, to answer your question, LA galbi is an American variation of the tradition preparation of galbi that was adopted from immigrant Korean communities in Los Angeles. It is prepared in the same way as regular galbi, except that the ribs are cut differently. Because most American butcheries cut ribs rib-eye style, instead of the thicker chunks of individual ribs Koreans typically do in their own country, Korean homes and restaurants in L.A. made galbi with these thinner cuts of beef with several ribs.
For our last dish, we ordered the Korean seafood pancake called Haemul Pajeon. It’s a savory pancake that’s filled with carrots, zucchini, mushrooms, bell peppers, hash browns, scallions, octopus, and other delicious seafoods. The batter gives is a crispy exterior outer layer and the middle tends to be creamier. This dish pairs extremely well with makgeolli (milky Korean rice wine) or soju (Korean vodka).
The Pan fried dumplings are my second favorite dumplings at this restaurant. A crispy outer shell, moist & juicy soup oozes out when you bite into it. Filled with a juicy, tender vegetable and pork mixture.
Make sure to stop by at Mei Jan Hong Beef Jerky for the best handmade jerky.
Suhang Restaurant serves up Shanghainese cuisine that brings out authentic flavors, friendly staff, and clean modern interior decor. The space is a bit tight and with its popularity, you’ll most likely have to wait in line, but it’s worth the wait. You will have to try the Xiao Long Bao (steamed dumpling pork buns), many say it’s the “best” in Richmond, but you’ll have to let us know what you think. The soup in the dumpling is juicy and rich in taste.
One of the best experiences in Richmond is walking around at the Richmond Night Market tasting a myriad of street food surrounded by the bustling of people crunching down on tornado potatoes, nomming on hot Takoyaki balls and ripping apart sizzling bbq off the grill, but what happens when it’s not Night Market season? Well, you can thank Bubble Queen for opening up a store front in Richmond with its popular Bubble Waffles and fresh fruit Bubble Tea. The popular asian snack called Bubble Waffles have been a major hit at the night markets and now you can get it pretty much 24/7. At first glance when you step into the store, you’ll notice the outrageous amounts of fresh fruit along the glass case, on top of the shelves, behind the shelves, falling from the sky you name it. What separates this bubble shop from rest is the selection of fresh fruit bubble tea, smoothies, hot and cold teas, milk/yogurt teas, and the huge candy bar selection from KitKat, Ferror Rocher, Oreo, Crunch, White Chocolate Hershey’s, Maltesers, Coffee Crisp and many others you can combine with the bubble waffles.
We recommend getting mochi in the Bubble Waffle.
8888 Odlin Crescent, Richmond, BC V6X3Z7
Kam Do Bakery (recently relocated) is the perfect way to end the trip for many reasons. A) You can take it on the road. B) They are absolutely delicious. C) A great gift for your friends and family back home. The bakery is located on No. 3 Road across the road from the SkyTrain super convenient for people going on and off as the sweet smell floats up.
We recommend the following: Coconut Bun, Lotus + Egg, Red Bean Paste, Pineapple, Taro, Date Paste, Winter Melon and Date Paste. All of which are sweet in flavor, flakey and taste like fruit. Tell us your favorite bakery goods in the comments.
2012 : CNN Travel | World’s best Chinatowns : “Must-visit restaurant” in Vancouver Chinatown
2010 : Chinese Restaurant Critic’s Choice | Best Chinese Bakery Silver Award
2009 : Chinese Restaurant Critic’s Choice | Chinese Pastry Gold Award: Apple Tart
Fisherman’s Terrace Seafood Restaurant
HK BBQ Master
Chef Hung Taiwanese Beef Noodle
Kirin Seafood Restaurant
Liu’s Taiwanese Restaurant
Sushi Hachi Japanese Restaurant
Nan Chuu Izakaya
G-men Ramen (Inside Nan Chuu Izakaya)